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Pearl Jam to Appear in Target Ad, Retail Deal to Follow

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That retracted fan account of a Pearl Jam show shot by director Cameron Crowe for a Target ad? Confirmed. Billboard pulled out its big gun -- executive editor Bill Werde -- to get the official word from the band's manager, Kelly Curtis, that the big-box retailer will be a semi-exclusive retail partner for Pearl Jam's upcoming disc, probably titled "Backspacer."

A new song called "The Fixer" that was played at the show and subsequently leaked online may or may not be the single for the new album, which will be Pearl Jam's first after ending its 18-year relationship with Sony. Last week Dr. Dre chose a Dr. Pepper ad as the venue to reveal a bit of his highly-anticipated new album, which would still be more beverage-spewing in any event.

Facing a contingent of grumbling, Target-disapproving fans, Curtis told Billboard:

"Everyone's making assumptions because Target is a big corporation," said Curtis. "It's important to remember we just got out of this 18-year relationship with Sony, and I'm pretty sure they are a bigger corporation than Target. We have the freedom to pick our partners and more control when we've ever had before. We're excited to choose who we're in business with."

Last time we checked, there wasn't a grassroots movement to highlight Target's labor practices, but it seems doubtful fans will be comforted by the fact that in 2008, Sony made $77 billion to Target's measily $63 billion. Still, where were you guys when they licensed a whopping 16 songs for use in episodes of "Cold Case"?

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